More than just a hotel in Piemonte, Italy!

Why hadn’t I returned to Piemonte? After my first year of university, I lived with an Italian Professor of Philology who was eager to perfect her English. It was a great trade-off. She received daily lessons and I lived with her in this magnificent part of the world. Claudia, her boyfriend and I would pop into her car to visit libraries all over the country from Ferrara to Bologna, even as far as Munich. Needless to say, not only did my Italian improve, but also I ate so well. Lucky for me, she was a brilliant home cook. How could she not be with the produce that was available right at her doorstep? […]

October 26th, 2017|Destinations, Italy, Piedmont|3 Comments

A Visit to the Whitney Plantation in Louisiana is a must!

Following our guide, the ten of us shuffled into the cramped cabin, leaving us barely enough room to breathe without bashing into each other. Sweat slowly dripped down my forehead into my eyes and I struggled to wipe it away, trying not to touch the person next to me.

Before our leader had a chance to speak, a young voice shouted out assuredly, “That’s the chimney Santa comes down!” Still adjusting from the bright sun, I jerked around to see who spoke, losing my balance in the process. My boyfriend caught me just before I fell into the lady next to me. Tightly grabbing my arm, he flicked his head in the direction of a little boy in the corner.

I could feel the whole group shifting, […]

October 6th, 2017|Destinations, Louisiana, USA|2 Comments

A Two Night Jaunt in Normandy, France – Fécamp and Honfleur

A three hour boat trip from Newhaven to Dieppe might not be everyone’s idea of luxury, especially if you have ever been to Newhaven or Dieppe port – no business class lounge here. Just a corrugated hut with a small café serving coffee if you’re lucky.

Still, you have the luxury of not getting to an airport, not having your luggage lost, not being told the flight is delayed. Once on board, snuggle into one of the comfy tables by the window and watch the White Cliffs of Newhaven merge into the Falaises Blanches de Dieppe.

Fécamp
I was heading there for a drop of that honey, spicy spirit that put Fécamp on the map: Bénédictine, and her glamorous home, the Palais Bénédictine. As true of most outings, […]

September 29th, 2017|Destinations, France, Normandy|0 Comments

Five things to do in Koh Lanta, Thailand

Are you thinking about Christmas? I was last year this time. The Cypriot and I made a decision to go to Thailand for the holidays. We spent a week in Chiang Mai, about which I have written extensively, and almost a week in Koh Lanta.

Why Koh Lanta? One reason – The Layana Resort and Spa. Four years before, we had selected Koh Lanta and the Layana to be our resting place after nine hectic, non-stop days in Myanmar. It was exactly what we needed, four days in the sand and sun, only moving off our lounge chairs to get to our next meal.  It was the Layana that inspired my series of A Bit of Perfection posts so many years ago.

The General Manager, Stefan Heintze, […]

September 16th, 2017|Koh Lanta, Thailand|0 Comments

A perfect two day trip to France – Chambéry & Annecy

Two day trip to France?? Is it possible to get the flavor of two towns with only a two day trip to France? Can I get a Oui Bien Sur up in here?* If you follow my suggestions below, you’ll have time to taste the food France is known for, tour adorable Renaissance towns, and sample a few of the many things Chambéry and Annecy made famous, including secret passageways, trompe-oeil-ed cathedrals, vermouth-stirred cocktails, and truffles au chocolat. Although you only have two days in France, it will feel like a lifetime

Lunch in Lake Annecy
Catch an early flight to Geneva and get off the plane ready to have lunch. In less than an hour, you can be sitting at the Auberge di Pere Bise sipping Rosé Champagne on […]

August 11th, 2017|Chambéry, Destinations, France|0 Comments

How to make a daiquiri Hemingway would drink

First study English Literature, then move to London and then visit Cuba – at least that’s what our guest today did before making me the Daiquiri of my dreams. Dave Miller, General Manager of Ray’s Bar in London, reveals how one phone call changed the course of his life.

From a tiny town in Scotland, Dave went from making Sex on the Beach to our cocktail of the week in one of London’s hippest bars. As an English Literature major, he had visions of writing that novel or working in publishing. After one glimpse into the Bonfire of Vanities’ lifestyle of wearing sneakers on the subway to being chained to a desk, he never doubted his life choice again.

Check out my Cocktail of the Week at […]

August 8th, 2017|Best Sips Worldwide, Season 1|0 Comments